Summer would not feel complete without little hands (and big hands!) harvesting bucketfuls of berries ...
Aside from the blueberry picking we did up in Humboldt in July, we embarked on a day trip to Swanton Berry Farms on the coast near Half Moon Bay in August.
We started in the blackberry fields. At first we only found red ones - not quite ready...
But as we adventured a little deeper into the rows and rows of blackberries,
we found all of the good and ripe ones!
Took a little snack (besides all of the blackberries we ate) break...
and then proceeded on with the strawberry harvest.
all in all, these plus one more big box of strawberries were our take-home loot.
In the past years, I have been too worried (about not doing it right, etc.) to make jam in the traditional method. I have only made freezer jam. This year, I decided to take the plunge as, besides all of these berries, we had an equal amount of blueberries which needed to be put up. I followed the directions on the Pomona's Pectin box (and yes, added a wee bit of sugar rather than honey this year...) and it turned out great! Sterilized all of the jars, filled them to the proper level, heard the little "pings" of the lids, and over a month later, the jars of jam are still looking great and tasting great when we crack open a new one (which we have done quite often around here...)
So, now we are stocked for at least a couple of months! Now, on to some apple butter in our near future... ;)